Tip of the Week #9 Small Spaces–Can’t Bump Out, Then Go Up


When you have an expanding family growing out of the size of its home, what do you do in this economy?  Well, if you are a first time buyer, the home market’s bubble is leaking well enough to consider moving out of that rental and buying a home.  However, current homeowners are stuck between a rock and a hard place.  To make a similar move requires selling your current home.  Not always an easy task to accomplish.  Gaining space through additions is a major undertaking requiring time, money, and inconvenience and may be limited by lot size and ordinances, and financial recovery of the remodeling costs.  A third option is what MDM’s Grandmother called ‘Making Do.’  Now this is not a passive reaction, it is in fact a proactive reaction involving several considerations:


  • Scale down projects.  Whole house needs a makeover?  Don’t take it on all at once.  Instead take a room at a time.  
  • Analyze each room to determine what the problems are and how you can streamline them.    
  • Too much clutter?  Well, sort through it categorizing everything by 1.  Keep, 2. Consider, 3. Donate, and  4. Throw.
  • Modern house with no walk-in closets?  Look at bumping out current bi-fold or sliding door closet into the room to create a walk-in.  Analyze the dead space in a room to accomplish it.  What is dead space?  Space where a piece of furniture might not fit, say between a window and current closet, and is just there.  Use the dead space to bump out the closet for additional storage.  With some planning this may have an additional benefit of creating a small, screened entry into the room.  Remember additional wall space provides a canvas for your decorating acumen.
  • Select storage that serves a dual purpose; an enclosed, hinged box for storage and a coffee table or ottoman.
  • Do the Dorm Trick.  Put bed on raised feet to increase your space under the bed for storage.
  • Look at your current windows.  Bay windows add space and seating to any room at the same time creating a cozy alcove for reading, studying, or day dreaming.
  • Put up shelving, both temporary and permanent in small areas like bathrooms, hallways, entrys.  Glass and mirror shelving reflect light and give the illusion of space.  There are so many possibilities with shelving.  It can be recessed, modular, freestanding and can take on the role as an additional design element.
  • Incorporate shelving with cabinets, or place ladders against the wall to organize linens, newspapers, and photo collections.
  • Open enclosed shelving above doorways can hold collectibles, favorite toys, and other favorites.
  • Bookshelves can organize  more objects than books.  Baskets can be placed in shelves to organize your home office or a panoply of items.
  • Remember to create space, unify your color scheme.  You can have a lot going on, but prevent a "busy" effect through unity of color and/or texture.

Creating Space Results in Harmony and Increases Value!

*Modular Shelves on sale at PBTeen  (2) L-shaped $5.99/reg.$29.99 in blue, white, and apple green.

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